The Radeon 9800 Pro To Radeon 9800XT Mod Guide!

Discussion in 'Reviews & Articles' started by Adrian Wong, Apr 13, 2004.

  1. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    The 256MB ATI Radeon 9800 Pro is probably the least popular ATI graphics card. It is a lot more expensive than the 128MB variant and the extra 128MB of memory proved rather useless. But while you may think that it is a sheer waste of money, it may actually turn out to be a real steal! Why?

    Because you can actually turn the 256MB Radeon 9800 Pro into a 256MB Radeon 9800XT! Today, Chai will show you just how to do that in his Radeon 9800 Pro To Radeon 9800XT Mod Guide!


    Link : The Radeon 9800 Pro To Radeon 9800XT Mod Guide!
  2. Max_87

    Max_87 huehuehue

    too bad mine is not a 9800XT disguise :lol: mine is the 128MB version, i managed to clock it at 425+/375 :mrgreen: with a large 2500+'s heatsink on it and a large fan blowing at it :p Chai is right, the stock cooler is utter crap :mrgreen: even the card is not overclocked, the whole card is burning hot! including the PCB :wall: :wall:
  3. zy

    zy Staff Member

    hmmmmmmm... thats what you get ... 9800 are damn hot :p
    even my 9600xt could run with my heatsink fan turned off :thumb:
  4. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    But I can run at 6xAA 16xAF, full detail UT2004 Demo (texture size is normal, not high like the retail version), at 40+FPS! :wicked:
  5. drab

    drab Newbie

    COO! YAH!WOO!GREAT!err---whats a radeon :? (only kidding) :lol: good work
  6. drab

    drab Newbie

    Anti aliasing is not pretending to be somebody that you are not 8) .Or not pretending to be somebody that you are :cry: Help,i am confucious :roll:
  7. zy

    zy Staff Member

    ermm .. how do you check the FPS???
  8. Sin22

    Sin22 Newbie

    Small thing to note, the R360 core is appearing now quite frequently in 9800Pro 128MB pieces. These can also be modded to a 9800XT 128MB using the hacked BIOSes found here with no artifacting issues.

    This is different from the older 9800Pro (R350 core) -> 9800XT BIOS mods where people "claimed" an increase in performance due to the mod which was more than likely due to artifacts appearing in 3DMark03.

    Using the Omega drivers (v2.5.22 onwards) which has a fix for such mods, the scores all go back to normal pre-modded levels.

    It is no secret that the R360 core has certain shader optimisations over the 9800Pro. Also a 9800XT vs. a 9800Pro at the same clockspeeds, the 9800XT will win clock for clock due to these optimisations. My theory is, on the old core, with the BIOS flash, those optimisations were being called by the different programs (games, benchmarks etc) which resulted in artifacts and artificially increased the scores. Anyone who benchmarks regularly will state how artifacts can both decrease and increase scores.

    Oh and one thing else, from memory the R350 cores had a default vGPU of 1.7v. The R360 scores have a vGPU of 1.8v or was it 1.75v. Either way, to increase o/cability, a vGPU mod ought to be done as well.
  9. BodySnatcher

    BodySnatcher Newbie

    Yikes! It crashed!

    I bought one of these the first day they appeared on Newegg after returning one of the Sapphire 9800PRO "lite" versions that was built on the 9700 PBC. For only $30 I moved up to the 9800XT PCB and 256MB as well. Of course I was thinking... Hmm... I wonder if?

    Then I saw that [H]ardOCP linked to the 9800PRO => 9800XT mod article and now... BAM! POW! ZOOM!

    My hunch was correct! :D

    Added 444 points to my 3DMarks2001 score! And 3" to my... ;)

    Thanks for the tips! And yes it did crash a few times while I got the CATs re-loaded and settled the argument between Overdrive and RadClocker.

    Now to find some additional cooling... :thumb:

    :beer: Cheers to Chai, thanks!
  10. moshpit

    moshpit Newbie

    IT WORKS!!! WOOHOO!! Sorry, just got enthused when I tried it and everything went exactly as in the article. SWEET!!!! I knew I had struck gold when I bought my Sapphire 9800 Pro 256mb recently and noticed that the core said "R360" on it and started comparing it to my 9800XT I had in my main rig. When I noticed the PCB were the same I wondered if a simple BIOS hack would free my XT from Pro shackles! YEEHAA!

    Some pics for ya:






    One point of interest. Overdrive is obviously working on the newly modded 9800XT but is showing the new card as running nearly 5 degrees Celcius cooler then my real XT does. My real XT commonly hits 70 degrees while so far the 9800 Pro modded to XT is running at 65 max temp under load with OD enabled. I have Rage3D tweaker installed and have confirmed the clock speed as being 418mhz when OD enabled and 412 when disabled. I guess the stock copper cooling on the 9800XT isn't as impressive as it seems like it should be if a dinky Vantec Iceberq 4 copper hsf and 8 (2 sets of 4) OCZ ramsinks can outpeform it. WOW!

    My heartfelt thanks go out to the Author of the article as this mod kicks so much booty if everything works out like it has for me.

    :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: 8)
  11. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Yup, you are right about the 128MB version coming with R360 core. Since the 128MB is still identical to the old 128MB, same PCB, so the main features of the XT could not be unlocked. I do note the slight increase in performance between the XT and Pro, but it's almost unnoticable, unless you benchmark it. :D

    And about the voltage, the stock voltage on R350 is indeed 1.7V. But the R9800 Pro 256MB runs at 1.7V only. (real 9800XT runs at 1.8V, need to confirm on that), so that could explain the poor overclocking I'm experiencing.

    To BodySnatcher and moshpit, thanks for all the praises! I'm glad that it works well for you! :thumb:
  12. snake92069

    snake92069 Newbie

    Think This One

    I was thinking about flashing this card when i buy it because from what i'v seen on there lates Bios and update section, both there XT and PRO 256 are using the same exact items except the bios...... :think: :think:
    also other forums also have people claiming that all these cards are XT ready.

    what do you guys think... and any othere suggestions on where or what type of card to buy.... and if i do get this guy should i replace the fans... :roll:

    On top of that should i flash with the Asus Bio or should i get the ones from the site on the link part of the review, and also should i remove the drivers from my old 9200SE first or should i just leave them there.
  13. Sin22

    Sin22 Newbie

    I dont believe that its just an issue with the PCB. Most of the people who have the newer R360 core and flashed it to a 9800XT 128MB have only two differences compared to a full fledged 9800XT 256MB (besides the obvious difference in RAM). The first one is that the overdrive feature is not available for usage (which IMO is pointless anyway). The second is that the built in temp readouts arent occuring which tends to suggest that the thermometer is not built into the core itself but to another part of the PCB, or if its in the core, it hasnt been connected.

    Other than that, performance is on par with a 9800XT much to my chagrin at times since they effortlessly get 300odd more 3DMarks than me when I am benching my ass off @ 493MHz w/1.8v VGPU.

    Oh and the volt mods do help slightly, this depends on individual cards as always since o/cing is a game of luck. My 9800Pro(R350) thus far is one of the fastest on air that I've seen in Singapore, doing 493 @ 1.8v. Whereas a mate who got an R360 core is maxing out at 440 @ 1.8v as well.
  14. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Yup, what you said is totally correct. R360 does not have an on-die diode like the RV360. So a separate thermal diode must been on the PCB, which is why only the 256MB version with the XT PCB has the OVERDRIVE.

    I didn't benchmark the difference between the Pro BIOS and the XT BIOS, so I'm not aware of the differences. But I do know there's some differences from various sources.

    I just checked my VGPU on my card, and disappointingly, it's already at 1.778V, so it's actually very close the 1.8V. So I have to say that my R360 is a crap overclocker. I might try water cooling later on.

    It is known that R350 overclocks much better than R360 do. Most R360 averagin at 430-450 range, and the R350 normally goes above 450MHz.

    snake92069: As long as you get a XT layout card, you can flash the original XT BIOS.

    When I bought this card, I had 2 choices. From Newegg or Allstar. I chose Allstar because they could guarantee my the XT PCB card. So I bought it from there. But I'm almost quite certain that all 9800 Pro 256MB should be based on that PCB.

    It's highly recommended that you use BIOS from the link I've provided, because the Asus BIOS is a little different. Using Asus BIOS may not enable OVERDRIVE tab. Asus uses their own software to detect temparature. I'm not familiar with Asus cards.

    Yup, you should uninstall your old drivers, but even if you don't uninstall, the Windows will detect a new hardware and ask you to reinstall the drivers anyway. ;)
  15. Sin22

    Sin22 Newbie

    Well some bit of news for the 128MB front.

    Just sent in my beloved 9800Pro on R350 core for an RMA. (Had a small kamikaze benching run last night) and I got back a 9800Pro 128MB with an R360 core.


    RAMs are Hynix HY5DU283222A F-28 410A. Will do the flash and volt mods later to see how high it scales. Default vGPU is confirmed to be 1.68v.
  16. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    Wow...that's a very low default VGPU! Good luck! :thumb:
  17. Sin22

    Sin22 Newbie

    Cheers mate. My previous one had a vGPU of 1.67v...was a real bomb, but doing 505MHz on the core @ 1.8v and a fair bit of artifacting killed a part of it.

    I also got an Arctic Silencer to play with today...lets see how this huge mound of aluminum holds up.

    Update: This sure is nice to have :


    Gg to o/c now to see how far the core goes, but so far so good.
  18. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    Good luck! :thumb:
  19. Sin22

    Sin22 Newbie


    Thats at 425/378 w/ a 3.0C @ 3.75GHz.

    Decent. I reckon if this can break 450MHz, the scores will be in the 7.3k range.

    But for that, the volt mod is needed, I'll put it on there later. Tmrw morning most likely since I'm getting sleepy.
  20. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    My card, 390/390, 2.2GHz AthlonXP, 6200+

    One question. Is it worth water cooling the card? Will it make a lot of difference?

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